Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Summer Internship

As most of you know, I will be spending the majority of my summer break doing an internship in Mexico City. I leave Saturday morning for an early flight to Chicago, then straight on to Mexico City.

My graduate school, the La Follette School of Public Affairs, does not require summer internships, but they do offer some financial aid for students doing internships outside of Madison.  This was the perfect combination for me.  I liked not feeling too much pressure to get an internship or risk not graduating. All of the pressure came from myself.  Although I could have worked full time all summer at my current part time job, I think an internship is an important resume builder and good experience. For a while now I have felt that not doing an internship during undergrad was a mistake and I didn't want to make the same mistake twice!

Aaron and I made an effort to save money throughout the year to make an unpaid internship financially possible, but knowing some funding would come from my program was essential to me seeking internships that were further away or had potentially high costs. 

I applied for a few early deadline internships, but wasn't excited about any of them until my internship with Fundacion Ethos came up. A recent (as of last weekend!) graduate of my program did this internship last summer and she had a wonderful time. All of the aspects of the internship appealed to me: small staff, hands on, Mexico City, poverty and social policy research, and using Spanish. It was also helpful to know someone who had already been there and had nothing but good things to say. Ethos was specifically looking for a La Follette student because they had a great experience with the student from last summer, so I have some big shoes to fill.

My internship will be with the International Poverty Observatory area of Ethos. You can read more about the organization and internship here: Ethos Internship Program.

I'm very excited to spend time in Mexico City, a place I have always wanted to visit.  Of course I have worries that come with traveling to any foreign country. Will I understand anyone? Will they understand my badly accented Spanish? Will I get lost (without my iPhone!)? But these worries are part of the things that make traveling exciting and leave you feeling accomplished. 

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